Property managers looking to progress their careers and take on greater responsibilities should understand the hard work and sacrifice behind real leadership.
Marcel Dybner, head of property management at Besser & Co, told RPM excellent property managers don’t necessarily make good leaders in a business, since the role requires different skills.
“Within a property management business, there are a whole range of additional tasks property managers could be doing to show initiative and leadership qualities, such as preparing process manuals, researching training material and sharing it with the team, and conducting meetings,” he said.
While showing initiative is helpful, it is important that property managers who wish to further their leadership skills discuss the necessary steps with their managers.
“One of two things will happen: you’ll either come up with a strategy on how to get to where you want to be, or realise that what you want to achieve won’t be possible where you’re currently working.”
Carolyn Wright, director of Your Property Manager, said team leaders in property management understand that this responsibility often means going above and beyond the role they are given.
“I very much value work-life balance in our work life here, but [the responsibility] may mean someone stepping up and taking time beyond their normal hours to complete a project or get something done to a deadline,” she said.
“You want people that think like business owners, even if it’s not their business.”
Ms Wright said leadership means showing dedication and making some sacrifices for the good of the team and the business.
“You have to be prepared to literally put your life on hold for a period of time to make things happen,” she said.
“The sacrifices that I’ve made over the years at the expense of my family have been enormous and I don’t think that’s sustainable, since you’ve got to get the business to a point where it can run without you.”
In order to help develop leadership skills and create a more cohesive work environment, Ms Wright has a consultant come in monthly to work with her agency’s team leader as well as with each staff member.
“It gives them an outlet to talk about me and talk about each other while I’m completely removed from that,” she said.
According to Ms Wright, this is process is important to her agency since no manager or owner can be proficient at every aspect of the business.